Comedians often push the envelope with their stand-up routines. However, Dave Chappelle reportedly went over the line, by far, with 20 minutes of transphobic jokes this week.
Like other comics, Chappelle thinks comedy has no bounds and transphobia monologues are no exception. Nonetheless, the LGBTQ community begs to differ, and some critics say Dave’s jokes were offensive and are no laughing matter.
Tuesday, Dave Chappelle hosted a crowded audience at Radio City Music Hall as part of his 16-show residency to highlight his return to comedy after an extended hiatus. Chappelle dove right into his comedic residency by poking fun at Donald Trump and prevailing issues with transgender individuals.
Recently, President Trump caused a ripple of confusion among the electorate –while blindsiding top brass — when he tweeted a change in policy regarding the enlistment of trans troops in the military. The former reality TV star, who courted LGBTQ people during his campaign, appeared to do an about-face by signaling a ban on transgenders in the Armed Forces.
“After consultation with my Generals and military experts, please be advised that the United States Government will not accept or allow transgender individuals to serve in any capacity in the U.S. Military.”
— Jezebel (@Jezebel) August 2, 2017
Chappelle apparently tapped into the Trump-transgender backlash for material and delivered a stunning diatribe chock-full of transphobic jokes that spanned nearly half an hour. Dave quipped that trans people are the “secret weapons” for U.S. generals in the fight against terror, suggesting ISIL would be too “repulsed” to engage in battle with them, as Salon wrote.
“If I was in ISIS in the trenches fighting against the United States and all of the sudden I see a man with a beard and big D-cup t*****s just rushing my foxhole and s**t, I’d be horrified,” Chappelle joked.
Dave Chappelle took aim at Caitlyn Jenner for her recently expressed interest in taking part in an upcoming edition of Sports Illustrated magazine. Jenner is a retired Olympic gold medal-winning decathlete. Chappelle teased that the publisher would be “cramming man-p***y” into the magazine.
Dave Chappelle's new comedy show at Radio City Music Hall showcases his singular daring and unusual storytelling https://t.co/57qzgHmty9
— New York Times Arts (@nytimesarts) August 2, 2017
In a short-lived tender moment, Chappelle acknowledged having little experience with transgenders and said his ignorance should not bar a trans person “from being a human being that deserves a life with dignity and happiness and respect.”
Almost in the same breath, Chappelle continued his transphobic attacks. He set up the joke by emphasizing the “inherent” hazards “that come with being a transgender woman of color.”
“The only reason all of us are talking about transgenders is because white men want to do it. If it was just blacks and Mexican like, ‘Hey, y’all, we feel like girls inside.’ They’d be like, ‘Shut up, n****r, no one asked how you felt.”
Dave Chappelle’s transphobic comedy routine comes as no surprise to many fans and others who marvel at the funnyman’s genius and stage presence. Still, some are put off by his insensitive jokes, specifically those that target people by gender, religion, and the like.
Dave Chappelle Accused of Making ‘Homophobic, Transphobic’ Jokes in Netflix Specials
— MAGAhits (@MAGAhitscom) April 16, 2017
The Salon writer took issue with Dave’s art form and thinks he crossed the line.
“His egregious comments about the identities of trans people reflect a broader issue the country now faces, especially as Trump’s transgender military ban reduces them to secondary citizens. And as the lives of trans people are threatened every day, remarks such as these shouldn’t be taken so lightly, even if they were ‘just a joke.'”
Do you think Dave Chappelle is transphobic? Did his attack on transgenders cross a line of decency?
[Featured Image by Tyler Kaufman/Getty Images for GQ]